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Lesson Plans

Re: Middle School Art Teacher

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Bunki Kramer (
Mon, 26 May 1997 21:22:21 -0700

>>> Hi! We recently moved to Texas and I have just accepted a position as a
>>> middle school art teacher. I will be teaching 6,7, and 8th grade students
>>> who all will take art for 40 minutes a day for the full year. The students
>>> will have only had occasional art classes in elementary school.
>>> Prior to this, I taught high school art in Southwest Virginia. I would
>>> appreciate any information anyone could send me about age appropriate art
>>> for this group of students. What kind of things are important for them to
>>> learn to be ready for high school art?
>>> Thanks, Teresa Sheffey
>Hi, Teresa.....Welcome to middle school. It will be different but yet
>you'll find you will really like this age for a # of reasons. I taught high
>school in my previous life BC (before children) and when I came back into
>the profession, middle school was my entrance. I honestly disliked it at
>first until I loosen up and got to know the kids. These kids ARE different
>(hormones and attention span) but, at the same time, can be still like
>teaching high school. I started teaching them at a lower level too but
>after a couple of years I found myself teaching at a higher-level mentality
>to the kids and guess what?....they started giving me higher-level results.
>I found out...and I think many of us older mid. school art teachers would
>agree...they ALWAYS give you back exactly what you expect!!!!
>Sooooooooooo....if you expect high school level production and thinking,
>that's exactly what you will get. Trust me....OR, try it yourself!
>As a begining mid. school teacher, I would start and elaborate with the
>basic elements and principles of design. If you have the chance (and a few
>extra bucks), I would invest in 1-2 Gerald Brommer videos to get a feel of
>some projects at more or less this age group. I would also suggest going
>down to your district or county educational office (where there might
>possibly be a resource library and check out or look through the last 10-12
>yrs. of ARTS AND ACTIVITIES magazine issues for ideas and also SCHOOL ARTS.
>I also started a big "bible" of ideas....some clips from this listserv,
>dittoed copies of older issues of the above two resources, my newer issues
>of the same, ideas from workshops and other teachers, etc. I now have 4 of
>these bibles, each 4" thick binders, of all-aged art ideas. I'd also hook
>up with the art mentor in your district AND start "pal"ing around with
>another mid. school art teacher in your area. I'd call around the schools
>and set up some "get-to-know-you" meetings with these valuable people. If
>you're like me, in a bunch of art teachers, you might be lucky and find ONE
>who will like to share their ideas and then you're "home free". High school
>teachers were even more valuable to me and still are.
>I would also start collecting ideas for extra credit things. These kids
>"need" to stay busy to stay out of trouble and you know what happens when
>kids don't finish at the same time. They have not quite got the hang of
>"self-motivation" yet. super organized and have a place for
>EVERYTHING. This age is more pliable for "training" (returning things to
>their rightful place) than high schoolers. This is also a good age for
>starting really long, involved projects...they have been use to working
>with 45-min. projects and not delving into more complicated works. Projects
>that take 1-2 weeks are good for them.
>In my state of California, this is the FIRST and LAST chance for many of my
>6,7,8th graders to have an honest-to-goodness art teacher. California does
>not have elementary art teachers, in general, and in high school the art
>and humanities can be covered with band, chorus, drama, photo, etc. and
>possibly skipping the fine arts all together! The middle school is the only
>time they can be "hooked" so it's REALLY important. I don't know how it is
>in your area.
>In a all your high school samples and try some of your
>high school stuff on them. You'll be really surprised at what these "little
>people" can and will accomplish. E-mail me if you want more ideas. I love
>to share! Cya.......
>Bunki Kramer
>Los Cerros Middle School
>Danville, California 94526

Bunki Kramer
Los Cerros Middle School
Danville, California 94526